I once saw a woman on television who used a jug to catch her urine. She took the jug out and dumped it directly on her compost pile. I gave it a try, using an empty plastic cat litter bucket. Every two days I took the bucket out and dumped it where ever my lawn needed some nitrogen. I could tell that the urine was a very strong fertilizer. It was much too strong for my garden plants, but it worked great on the lawn. I take a water pill. so this saved me about 10 – 20 gallons of water every day, almost 2 gallons per flush.
I asked a guy I know who works at my local gardening center about it, and he gave me a little more information. Turns out that in addition to nitrogen, urine also has a lot of phosphorous. He said that you should always dilute urine with water – 10 parts water to one part urine. Water dilutes the nitrogen so that it isn’t too strong for your plants. He recommended pouring diluted urine on the compost pile to make compost break down faster. He said not to use urine on edible plants if you take prescription drugs. The drugs pass through your urine in to the soil and plants. If you’re interested to learn more about prescription drugs and plants, there is a good book about this by Stephen Harrod Buhner called The Lost Language of Plants.
Since I talked to my friend about it, I have been using 10x diluted urine on my lawn regularly and it works great – the grass has never looked better! I told another friend of mine about it and he emailed me this article from National Geographic called “Is ‘Peecycling’ the Next Wave in Sustainable Living?” Looks like maybe I won’t be the only guy in my neighborhood out dumping my pee on the lawn next year!
Note: This article was an entry in our October – December 2014 writing contest. Click here to find out about our current writing contest.